Blog money

So I observe over on Ensight that Jeremy has basically sold his blog for something in the neighborhood of $15,000 (Canadian or USD?), and still got a sweetheart deal:

I am effectively considering bidding closed. I have a deal on the table. It’s substantial, is from a longtime Ensight reader, allows me to keep editorial control and turns me into a paid blogger.

Right on! It’s the blogging brass ring. I’ve been thinking lately of ways to make money doing this whole blogging/”nanopublishing” thing, and in addition to this highly apropos example, I’ve been poking around the Weblogs, Inc. sites to get a feel for what they’re doing and how.

I’m not necessarily talking about writing in general—that’s a whole different topic that I will actually address sometime soon—but rather how to leverage some of these trends and technologies in weblogs toward money. It seems to me that if you can’t get someone to pay you to blog, then the best bet is to bootstrap yourself via advertising (Google’s AdSense and/or other?), like what the Weblogs, Inc. guys (and guys like Nick Denton) are doing. And perhaps via the “tip jar” method: accepting PayPal donations and the like. And of course this doesn’t even address RSS…

Not to say I’m ready to give up blogging if I can’t make money at it; I’m not, of course, there’s too much of the writing bug in me. But I’ve got some ideas in mind and I’m wondering, can it be done?

Thoughts?

3 thoughts on “Blog money”

  1. I happen to know it can be done. I just don’t happen to have any useful illustrations or examples to corroberate my certainty. Nor do I even have a recipe; I simply *know* (a priori, geroff me) that many exist and are out there in possibility space. *yay*

    One ingredient you should also not overlook is Wiki. Wiki seems to be a ridiculously powerful technology. I think that Wiki/CMS + blog/CMS + RSS + excess energy in the audience = enourmous possibilities. Now we just got to get Alton to weigh in on recipe. 🙂

  2. you know what I think but there are probably a lot of things going on here – one is the blog-for-ad-supported site like bloggingbaby, another is the sell-your-own ads philosophy. but another idea that i’m thinking about is to basically leverage your blog into offline media – think dan gillmor. he’s making lots of moula from his book, largely thanks to publishing draft versions on his blog, and publishing under creative commons license to get the blogosphere pumping him up. or wil wheaton, who turned his blog into a book, and now is a somewhat successful author. a bunch of people are trying to turn blogs into offline magazines – like worthwhile – i think that’s a little more of a stretch. but there are, and will be, lots of people making money from blogs, and it probably won’t be all, or even most, from ads.

    my personal hope is to build a name with my blogging so i can get credibility and one day become a very well-paid on- and off-line writer. crossing my fingers…
    signed,
    a blogger-for-money

  3. Jesse- I’m somehow certain it can be done, also. Somehow. 🙂

    Wikis are awesome, there’s no doubt, but I’m not sure how they fit into this space– they’re great for building community sites, or something a la Wikipedia, but I think if everyone has their fingers in the pot then you end up with something vastly different than you expected…

    Sarah- yeah, I’ve been thinking about the "offline" media stuff too. Wil Wheaton’s approach is the better model, turning the blog into a book, but I doubt everyone could be as successful out of the gate. Blogs into magazines, I just don’t see.

    Well, if you want to become a well-paid writer in general, don’t *just* write for blogs; write for *everything* you can, online and off.

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